This document presents the official policies of the Commonwealth’s coastal program and explains the federal consistency review process in Massachusetts. It also provides helpful context about the coastal program and contains important jurisdictional components. Specifically, it:
- Summarizes the Coastal Zone Management Act, the federal legislation authorizing the coastal program.
- Provides an overview of the Massachusetts coastal program, including its history, organizational structure, networked approach, jurisdiction, and program plan documents.
- Explains the federal consistency review process, including the activities subject to review; general permits; pre-application consultation; application requirements, review procedures, and timetables; necessary data and information; project modifications; and emergency certifications.
- Summarizes other state regulatory programs affected by the coastal program policies.
- Presents the Massachusetts coastal program policies.
- Provides appendices that include the network agencies, legal boundary of the Massachusetts coastal zone, coastal program legal authorities, and listed federal actions subject to federal consistency review.
This Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management Policy Guide (Policy Guide) is a component of the federally approved Massachusetts coastal program, replacing the 2002 Massachusetts Coastal Zone Management Plan. It is important to note that this guidance works with the other component documents of the approved Massachusetts coastal program (listed in the Program Plan Documents section on page 3) and specific statutory or regulatory provisions that form the legal basis for the Massachusetts coastal program.